I’m thrilled today to have Scott Kedersha on the blog. Scott and his wife, Kristin, have been our friends for over 10 years. We have led in marriage ministry with them and are grateful for their commitment to marriages that honor God. Scott has a book coming out late next week, Ready or Knot. I’m more than halfway through and have already had several ah-ha moments. Thank you Scott for sharing your wisdom with us today!
What are you doing to date and pursue your spouse?
For the last five years, I’ve written and blogged about marriage, parenting, and ministry. My reading audience is pretty split 50/50 between men and women, but I typically focus on challenging the men to step-up and lead. Since this post on Mom Hack Mondays is written primarily for you moms out there, I thought I’d shift my focus and challenge the ladies today.
One of my biggest concerns as a married man is that our home and marriage would become boring. We’d get stuck in ruts and focus more on the kids, crazy schedules, and to-do lists more than we do on our relationship with God or our marriage. I’m not minimizing the importance of kids and schedule, but I know when life gets busier, my relationship with the Lord and my spouse are among the first things to go by the wayside. That’s why I so appreciate what Alissa wrote a few weeks ago about letting some plates drop. We can’t do it all.
But today I want to help you with a few brief suggestions on how to not let your marriage fall by the wayside. Over the years I’ve learned it’s the small things we do in marriage every day that grow a marriage and it’s the little things we neglect over time that destroy a marriage. For the last 13 years in marriage ministry, I’ve watched way too many marriages die or shrivel up.
Last year I wrote a 3-part series on the mundane things we do every day to grow a great marriage. Feel free to check out the series. In this post, however, I’m focusing on one of those mundane things we can do to grow our marriage.
What are you doing to date and pursue your spouse?
I’m going to share three things: 1) How can you pursue your spouse daily, 2) Some practical, creative ideas I recently heard, and 3) One thing Kristen and I do that helps us pursue each other.
1) How can you pursue your spouse daily?
In his book Fun Loving You: Enjoying Your Marriage in the Midst of the Grind, Ted Cunningham shares about the daily, weekly, and annual getaway he does with his wife Amy. We don’t have time or space to recount all three types of getaways, but we can focus on the daily getaway. Ted recommends, every day, finding quality time in and around your home with your spouse.
Regardless of the age of your kid(s), look for small ways, every day to get some alone time with your spouse. Ask questions, catch up on the day, align schedules and expectations, and pray together. You might even find some time for some adult funtivities. The small, mundane act of getting together time daily goes a long way in growing your marriage.
2) Practical, creative ideas to pursue your spouse
I don’t know about you, but I’m inspired by others. When I see someone do something great, I want to learn, grow, and be creative in the ways I pursue my wife. Here are three creative ideas I recently heard from friends. These are not meant to be prescriptive, but rather are shared to help you think of some creative ideas.
1. “We visited a small family vineyard near our house. The property was small, but the grounds were pretty. Plus, it had a huge outdoor patio area with fire pits and wooded scenery. We did a tasting with the owner’s daughter and then had a picnic in the vineyard. After that we just walked around and spent time chatting on the patio. It was super fun and we’d recommend it to anyone!”
2. “I planned a date night for my husband. We did all the things he loves including an outdoor picnic, basketball (I beat him at “Pig”), and then eating some pie at Emporium Pies!”
3. “I gave my husband a word to plan a date around. It was “air balloon.” He googled it and found that air balloons are originally from Paris. So, he decked out his car with lights, a mini Eiffel Tower, scented the car with French lavender, and created a playlist of music that were clues to the date and the location we were going to. He bought balloons to represent hot air balloons, got a card with a hot air balloon on the front, and we played a trivia game he made up which we played during dinner. Finally, he took me to a really elegant French Bistro with the most delicious four course meal.”
What can you do to creatively date and pursue your spouse?
3) One thing Kristen and I do that helps us pursue each other.
This one is especially great for those of you whose kids are all in school. A few years ago we discovered the date day. In a date day, I take a vacation day, we drop the kids off at their schools, and we get a full day together without kids. Lunches are cheaper than dinner and you get a longer date than you would during an evening out.
We usually explore Dallas on our date days and experience something we’ve never done before and eat somewhere we’ve never eaten before. Every year on our anniversary we take a date day and might do one more another time during the school year for our kids.
Years ago I read this quote by Martin Luther: “Let the wife make the husband glad to come home, and let him make her sorry to see him leave.”
What would it take for you to build a home and marriage where your husband was glad to get home and you were sorry to see him leave? Creative pursuit of your spouse will not solve all your problems, but it will go a long way towards creating the type of home Luther describes.
Scott Kedersha serves as the Director of Marriage Ministry at Watermark Community Church in Dallas, Texas. He writes about marriage, family, leadership, and ministry, and is the author of Ready or Knot? 12 Conversations Every Couple Needs to Have before Marriage. He is married to Kristen, has four boys, and can be found on his blog, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.